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Sara Yael


Teaching Faculty

Dr. Sara Yael Hirschhorn is a member of the teaching faculty of the Shalom Hartman Institute of North America as well as its Chicago Scholars Circle. She joined the faculty of Northwestern University in fall 2018 as the Visiting Assistant Professor in Israel Studies at the Crown Family Center for Jewish and Israel Studies, where her research, teaching, and public engagement activities focus on Diaspora-Israel relations, the Arab-Israeli conflict, and the Israel ultra-nationalist movement.

Sara is a graduate of Yale University (B.A.) and the University of Chicago (M.A., Ph.D.) and the recipient of numerous grants and fellowships.

Her first book, City on a Hilltop: American Jews and the Israeli Settler Movement (Harvard, 2017) was the winner of the 2018 Sami Rohr Prize in Jewish Literature Choice Award and a finalist for the 2017 National Jewish Book Award.

She is currently working on a new book manuscript, tentatively entitled “From Jackson to Johannesburg to Jerusalem: How the 1967 War Transformed Diaspora Zionists Into White People,” which is a transnational history of the Diaspora Zionism since the Six Day War, alongside other articles and projects.

Prior to her appointment at Northwestern, Sara was the University Research Lecturer and Sidney Brichto Fellow in Israel Studies at the University of Oxford (2013-2018) and a postdoctoral fellow in Israel Studies at Brandeis University (2012-2013).

Apart from her academic work, Sara is also a frequent public speaker, writer, media commentator, and policy consultant on Israel/Jewish Affairs.

Sara Yael Hirschhorn


Jul 14, 2021

Sara Yael Hirschhorn traces the history of Zionism and identity politics over the past five decades.

Feb 12, 2021

Israel faces a new terrorist insurgency. This time it’s ultra-Orthodox Jews, armed with COVID, and the government is unwilling, or unable, to safeguard lives or the law

Dec 22, 2020

Sara Yael Hirschhorn, Carly Pildis

Israel Policy Forum discussion of key issues facing the future of Washington, the American Jewish community, and Israel.

Aug 26, 2020

Podcast on the response of Israeli politicians and settlement officials to Israel-UAE normalization, and how recent developments play into the 2020 U.S. presidential election.

Sep 23, 2019

Ayman Odeh isn’t about us. Let us quietly applaud the audacity of his hope, but let him alone make history.

May 24, 2019

Pittsburgh and Poway were an abstract horror for me until last week, when the arson wave hit my own Chicago synagogue.

Jan 17, 2019

The responsibility of Jewish power and progressive activism today must recognize both the privilege and powerlessness of our past while protecting our future

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The End of Policy Substance in Israel Politics